By Julita, SOCCOM Tawau
Tawau : Holy Trinity Parish Tawau ushered in the Chinese Lunar New Year with a Thanksgiving Mass on Monday, 8 February at 8.00 am. The mass was presided over by the rector, Msgr. Nicholas Ong and con celebrated by Rev. Fr. Johnny Raju. Some 600 Chinese parishioners together with other parishioners from the different communities attended the celebration.
Msgr. Nicholas began his homily with warm greetings of a Blessed, Happy and Prosperous Lunar New year to the congregation. He said, 'Your attendance today at this Thanksgiving Mass indicates that you have a priority in your life journey. Having a thankful heart is always a blessing, for you know whom to thank for during this gracious moment ~ the Lord, the Giver of Life and Love. You will receive wonderful and meaningful graces by thanking and glorifying the Lord for all the blessings and goodness you have received for the past year.'
He continued, 'God knows all of your needs. The riches of the world can never satisfy your desires. But we must first seek the Kingdom of God for the rest will be added according to your needs. In this Extraordinary year of Mercy we must think and pray for those poor and unfortunate people living in the periphery of society. Extend a hand, reaching out to them in corporal and spiritual works of mercy. Be satisfied with what you have and never cease to thank God.'
He called on the parishioners to build and nurture a strong relationship with the Lord. This will give us the strength to share and to spread the Good News among our family members and friends.
In conclusion, he said, 'May the Good Lord continue to shower His blessings upon us always not only this year but till the day when He comes down for us. Once again, I wish you all a Blessed, Happy and Prosperous New Year.'
After the Mass, Msgr. Nicholas Ong and Fr. Johnny Raju blessed the baskets of mandarin oranges and distributed them to the parishioners as a symbol of sharing the blessing of God.
The rector, accompanied by the religious sisters, chairmen of the Pastoral Council and the Chinese Pastoral Community ( CPC ) made visits to a few Chinese families. This is to foster better relationship bond, instilling a sense of belonging within the community.